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tv   Hardball Weekend  MSNBC  September 24, 2011 2:00am-2:30am PDT

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good evening, i'm chris matthews in washington. the texas massacre. with each debate, rick perry looks like a triple a ballplayer trying it in the majors. he stumbled his way through what should have been romney's flip-flopping. republicans he said didn't have a heart. he got called on a nonfact, how about a fib. the audience became the story. this time, booing a u.s. serviceman for being gay. that's it. they booed him out loud for being gay. this is a huge negative for the gop cheering let him die for someone who doesn't have health insurance. they never say excuse me, i'm
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not one of them. plus, worst suspicions confirmed department. the chairman of the joint chief of staff accused the pakistanny government of supporting attacks in afghanistan. is the u.s., our country, prepared to go into pakistan and take the militants out? also, the palestinian authority requested full membership status at the u.n., that's statehood, nationhood, if you will. israel's prime minister benjamin netanyahu. finally, check out michele bachman, no more taxes. how does she want to fund the government she wants to run. how does she expect to get paid this week? we start with rick perry's flip
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flot, simple flop in the debate. let me start with david. by the way, the headlines coming up are dramatic. they are unforgiving of rick perry's performance. the headlines are damming. texas toast. perry worries gop. rick perry, beginning of the end? here is a talking points memo are the headline running with rick. they turn on perry after the debate and bill crystal wrote a special editorial with the headline yikes. no front-runner in a presidential field has ever had as weak a showing as rick perry. it's as close to a disqualifying two hours for him. thank you for joining us so
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much. >> thank you for having me. >> among republicans, that's the target audience through next spring. how bad did rick perry do? >> he had a tough night. it's difficult to say, it's a difficult night for perry. more than that, he created an opening for governor romney with 3500 republican activists gathered in orlando. this is a straw ballot that romney declined to participate in. there's been an opening created. you have to remember, we are very early. at this point, rudy giuliani was the darling of the media and leading in the polls. things can change quickly. >> politics gets more advanced every four years, things move faster. rudy giuliani was the leader at this time.
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thompson. let's look at one of the weakest moments for mr. perry. he stumbled over what should have been, this is the easiest. a six-inch put. a well rehearsed flip on romney's flip-flops. listen. >> i think americans don't know which mitt romney they are dealing with. is it the mitt romney that was against the second amendment before he was for the second amendment? was it before he was before the social programs from the standpoint of he was far standing up for roe versus wade, before he was against it. he was for race to the top. he's for obama care and now he's against it. >> david, i have never counted so many brain freezes in one
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sentence. >> please make it stop. he's making george w. bush look articulate. as bad as that response was, he prepared for that line of attack and couldn't pull it off. >> you can't remember the capital of florida. >> index card it was on for him. i don't know if we'll get to it, but the answer he gave on pakistan was frightening. >> here is the fox news moderator asking rick perry what he would do. 3:00 a.m., the call always comes at 3:00 a.m., if they lost their nuclear weapons to the taliban. here is part of perry's response. >> just yesterday we found out that hakani has been involved in a terrorist group associated with the pakistani country.
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so, to have a relationship with india, to make sure that india knows they are an ally of the united states, today we don't have those allies in that region that can assist us if that situation that you talked about were to become a reality. >> remember that beauty contestant a couple years ago that talked about south africa, then iraq and thinking of all those things in her head but nothing logical. what does india have to do with stopping it? we are going to get a nuclear power in south asia. our worst fear in history. >> here is the challenge. certainly governor romney had a good night. nobody can deny that but rick perry can take solace in the fact -- i can tell you as
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someone from florida and a delegate to the straw ballot tomorrow, people in florida, new hampshire and south carolina are much less focused on the race at this moment. >> i agree they don't always decide elections. i any senator kerry won over bush last time around. al gore could be sharper. in the end, you have to like the other guy more. was there something likable that offset perry's inability to speak? >> i think there are people in florida who are looking for a candidate who is very direct and speaks the truth. it's what governor perry attempted to exploit about romney, the perceived flip-flops on the issues. you have to remember this is a very expensive race. it's a marathon, not a sprint. there are three candidates that
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can participate in the long haul through florida. it's a primary of late february. i think florida is the deciding contact. perry, romney and huntsman. with respect to the straw ballot, romney was the only one that committed to play. his wife is from orlando. they invested resources. he may overperform. not only did perry create an opening for romney, but may have for huntsman as well. >> who wins the straw vote tomorrow? romney or somebody else? >> i don't know if romney could win it, but he'll finish stronger. he has the strongest relationship with the delegates. he campaigned here actively in 2008. speaking at the c pack conference perry tried damage control. listen.
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>> as conservatives, we know values and vision matter. it's not who is the slickest candidate or the smoothest debater that we need to elect. we need to elect the candidate with the best record and the best vision for this country. >> well there he is reading his notes, of course. that points so with anybody. can you lose a debate badly and say it didn't matter? >> no. sally is right. a lot of people won't pay attention. >> he's 0 for 3. >> he hasn't been impressive, yet. he's not being serious. debate prep is one of the most serious things a candidate can do. he seems to have a problem staying up after the first hour. maybe he needs iron supplements. it's not who is the most slick or smoothest. if you look at his answers, he
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didn't come across as a guy with intellectual heft to make decisions in the white house. >> are you a delegate? >> i am. >> who are you voting for? >> i haven't decided. >> you haven't decided? >> i haven't. >> where are you leaning right now on a friday night? >> i'm leading toward hailey barber. >> he's not running. >> i'm going to write him in. >> i like him, too, but i don't think he's running. >> she didn't say rick perry. >> coming up, if you don't tell us, i can make it up. coming up, the other headline was beautiful to watch. the crowd reaction. the audience became the story about a gay soldier fighting in uniform. he's booing somebody fighting for our country.
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back to "hardball." rick perry he is performance may have not been the best. for the third time in a row, republican audiences made news. here is the crowd last night reacting to a question from a gay soldier over in iraq. this guy is on duty, on post and watch what happens. listen. >> in 2010, when i was deployed to iraq, i had to lie about who i was, because i'm a gay soldier, and i didn't want to lose my job. my question is, under one of your presidencies, do you intend
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to circumvent the progress that's been made for gay and lesbian soldiers in the military? [ audience booing ] >> yeah, i would say any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military. the military's job is to do one thing, and that is to defend our country. we need to give the military, which is all volunteer, the ability to do so in a way that is most efficient and protective of our men and women in uniform. and i believe this undermines that ability. [ audience cheering ] >> well, there's the republican party coming out against sex in the military. anyway, the debates last night, some of the audience cheers executions, remember that one, the previous debates, and allowing the uninsured to do, that was in the tea party debate. well, this can't help the image of a party looking to win a national election, i wouldn't think. alex burns is with politico and chris cillizza is managing editor of postpolitics.com and an msnbc contributor. thank you, gentleman, both -- alex, thanks for joining. alex, i want to hear what you think about this. this sort of raw stuff coming out of republican audiences,
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anti-gay, burn 'em, just right off the bat, let's execute hundreds of people, really anti-attitudes about people who don't have health insurance. let 'em die on the gurney! this instinctive negativity and even hatred of people who are in trouble and are vulnerable doesn't strike me as a compassionate conservative commentary on the party. >> well, chris, i think that you just sort of hit the nail right on the head with that term, compassionate conservative. there's an opening here for one of the candidates on the stage to be the guy at the debate who says, you know what, let's just take the temperature down a couple of degrees. let's enforce criminal laws, let's not cheer for executions. you know, let's get tough on health insurance, let's not cheer for people who die because they don't have it. you know, there's that space there for someone to sound like the compassionate guy, the guy with heart. no one has sort of stepped up into that role just yet. >> chris cillizza? >> you know, alex is right, but i would add, the guy who looks presidential and sounds presidential, right, you're the president of the whole country. i know it's a primary, in
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democratic primaries you're on the left and republican primaries, you're on the right. >> who says all gay people are democrats? don't they feel any love at all or affection or exceptions of the people in their own political ranks? >> you know what it struck me as, as i was watching, is that there's no natural in this debate. there's no natural in this field. let me explain. if that happened with bill clinton or ronald reagan -- >> what would bill have done? >> they would have said, you know what, this guy is in there, he's risking his life for us. they would have paused -- now, he might have probably gotten to whatever point he wanted to get to, but he would have paused, because he is naturally gifted at leading and understanding and that matters. >> you're on to something. here's what you're on to, is there any natural leader who can stand against the crowd in the republican party, or is it mob rule? in other words, they have these raw emotions, fine, but usually there's a leader that stands up. they don't need edmond burke, who stands up and says, let's think that through again. this man is fighting for our country, you may not approve about his political
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orientations, but he's fighting for our country, let's have a hand of applause for everyone in our military. that would be a chilling moment. why doesn't somebody -- and here's my hunch, it doesn't work. perry came out for having a heart for the illegal immigrant's kid who came into this country at the age of 3 and is trying to get into college in the state he's living in. how about some heart? >> got booed, chris. >> is it possible, alex, you can't stand against this mob rule right now on the tea party right? you can't do that? >> i think that answer you were mentioning from rick perry, did him an awful lot of damage. and not necessarily because he tried to be compassionate in a party that's hostile to compassion, but because he questioned the motives of people who disagree with him on immigration. so i think that that could have been a moment for him, where he tries to take kind of the george w. bush line on immigration, you know, that if you're going to walk 200 miles through the desert for a job, i want you in my country. but he didn't quite pull it off. and i think that goes to the other chris' point that there's not a natural in this election,
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there's not a guy who in that split second -- >> but even mccain, who wasn't a brilliant politician, he stood up against calling obama a muslim. >> chris, this is the back and forth. if you look at polling, republican voters say, we want someone who can win and who can lead, not just someone who agrees with us. but that's in theory. in practice, all of these guys, and i would say romney is the least like this. look, romney -- you've heard mitt romney say arne duncan did some good things, praising anyone in the obama administration is not good. so he's willing to go as close as you can go, and remember last night, provoked about did he think the obama administration was a socialist, he didn't answer -- >> so he's not willing to get in the barrel and do what they want like, for example, he will not say -- he will not say he's a socialist. he will not say, i, mitt romney, am a tea partier either. he's very careful not to ruin himself for the general. here he is. let's listen to rick perry, given a chance, receiving a round of boos for defending his position on educational opportunities in texas for those children, get this, of illegal
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immigrants. >> if you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no other reason than they've been brought there, by no fault of their own, i don't think you have a heart. this was a state issue, texans voted on it, and i still support it greatly. >> senator santorum -- >> you heard that, alex, it began as some whoops, some success for him, because there's obviously his supporters there, but then you heard that slow, delayed, mean roar of disapproval. frank luntz, who was doing their focus group afterwards said that was the least popular thing said in that focus group the entire evening, talking about heart. he said, conservatives are offended when you suggest they don't have a heart. >> well, i think for the first two-thirds of that answer, rick perry was on to something, talking about sort of being compassionate toward the children of undocumented immigrants.
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john mccain's answer was sort of the textbook answer on this, that, look, we can disagree around the policy, but we all have to recognize that these people we're talking about are all god's children. but that's not where rick perry went. he went and said that a position that most people in the republican party hold is heartless. >> thank you, it's great having you on. one of the young genius'. up next, catch this, no payment for government. this is like the old roosevelt thing. it won't cost anything if you vote for me. my salary is free. how far is she going? who is going to pay her paycheck? stick around. the side show. you're watching "hardball" on msnbc. sitting. waiting. hoping. that's a recipe for failed investing. open an e-trade account and open doors, seize opportunities, take action with some of the most powerful yet easy-to-use trading tools on the planet all built to help you maximize the potential
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back to "hardball." now to the sideshow. a great sideshow tonight.
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first, it wasn't all tense at last night's gop debate, as candidates sparred back and forth with each other, new to the debate scene was candidate gary johnson of new mexico. he tried to inspire some laughs. >> my next-door neighbor's two dogs have created more shovel-ready jobs than this current administration. >> well, he was playing to the right crowd with that one. only problem, the joke was vaguely familiar. >> my dogs have created more shovel-ready work than obama has. >> wow. almost verbatim. but, don't jump to conclusions. rush may have done some borrowing himself. check out this photo from a tea party way back in 2009. you've got to give credit where credit's due. wow. and more from the debate front, here's a new take on reality. at one point, candidates were asked about taxes. let's hear the inimitable
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michele bachmann's one-of-a-kind take on tax policy. now, she's running for president. here she goes. >> i think you earn every dollar, you should get to keep every dollar that you earn. that's your money. that's not the government's money. that's the whole point. barack obama seems to think that when we earn money, it belongs to him. and we're lucky just to keep a little bit of it. i don't think that at all. i think when people make money, it's their money. >> that's right, we shouldn't have any taxes, so, one, no one pays a dime. well, to be fair to bachmann, very fair, take a few steps back, saying we do need to make some contributions to fund the government over time, but not before as a country we have a change of mind-set, then we have to pay tax. 200 proof pandering on display here. that's "hardball" for now. up next, "your business" with j.j. ramberg. [ female announcer ] so you think your kids are getting enough vegetables?
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